Air Pollution from Vehicles

Topics: Automobile, Carbon dioxide, Air pollution Pages: 6 (2072 words) Published: July 3, 2011
Air Pollution from Vehicles
Jacqueline Alcantar
University of Phoenix
Kieste Mayfield
October 24, 2010

Automobiles as well as other mobile vehicles are one of the largest contributors to polluting our air on a daily basis. While these vehicles produce green house gases such as carbon monoxide, they are also contaminating the air with many other air pollutants and air toxins. By finding alternative fuel sources will be one of the solutions to curb the emissions that produce the pollutions.

As smaller cities grow larger in human population our amount of vehicles used daily increases as well. Along with the vehicles we operate come many problems we may see on a regular basis. Some problems you do not see until it is too late to reverse. Vehicles produce air pollution through petroleum based gasoline and diesel fuels that these cars use. The fuel burns through a process in which has no other positive feedback besides getting us from point A to point B. During that process air pollution is formed from evaporation and combustion. During the combustion process carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydro carbons, and air toxin are released into the environment. Air toxins are what has been suspected/ known to cause cancer and other serious health and environmental issues. The other gasses that are being emitted into the air are known as green house gasses and have a larger contribution to the global changes in the climate.

Carbon monoxide is a poisonous and odorless gas that is emitted into the air as a result from incomplete combustion of fuel emitted directly from the tail pipe. This can happen from a low air to fuel ratio in the engine. Also in altitudes when air is thin. The thin air reduces the amount of oxygen available for combustion. Once carbon monoxide is released into the air and breathed in by every individual a cycle begins. This cycle affects a person by entering the bloodstream through the lungs and forms carboxyhemoglobin ( a compound that makes it difficult for the blood capacity to carry oxygen to organs and tissue). Both healthy and non healthy people are affected by this. In a healthy person they may be affected when their exercise capacity is impaired, visual perception, manual dexterity, learning abilities, and the ability to perform complex tasks. In a non healthy individual their problems or symptoms may worsen and may encounter chest pains and loss of breath. Along with these problems with pollution comes more statistics to help us realize the impact vehicles have on our daily life. Gregory Boss provides us with the knowledge and breakdown of the amount of pollution produced on a yearly basis through vehicles. In one estimate, 590 million passenger vehicles operating world- wide consume an average of 550 gallons of gasoline per year. Which would results in a world- wide consumption of 324,500,000,000 gallons of gasoline per year. Also estimated was that each vehicle exhaust on a yearly basis emits an average of 80 pounds of smog causing hydrocarbons, 606 pounds of carbon monoxide , 41 pounds of nitrogen oxide (which causes acid rain and contributes to smog) and 10,000 pounds of carbon dioxide (which is believed to cause climate change) ( Boss, 2010). With all those high number in mind I think it would be wise remember that alternative fuel sources will eliminate these pollutants.

While serious human health problems can arise with the pollution of vehicles, there is a number of problems occurring with the things do not live. For example, the green house effect. The green house effect makes the earth able to have people live on it. The green house has gasses in which the earth’s atmosphere collects heat and light from the sun. With too much being collected cause by pollution such as carbon dioxide the earth will collect too much heat and get to hot. This will result in plants and animals dying off due to the heat being too strong. Next is global warming. Acid rain (Nitrogen oxide) is the known...

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U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 1998. Automobiles and Carbon Monoxide. EPA 400-F-92-005.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 2010. Automobile Overview: Emissions. Retrieved from
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, February 2007. Control of Hazardous Air
Pollutants from Mobile Sources: Final Rule to Reduce Mobile Source Air Toxins.
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